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  1. #1
    Sr. Apprentice BlackHawk99's Avatar
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    Apr 2009
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    Grand Blanc, MI
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    Default Longevity of the 350

    It seems to be pretty common knowledge that the 350 is a strong motor, but just how strong is it?

    We have 215,000 on our Tahoe and it runs really well. Burns some oil, has a bad rear main seal, provides ample power. No real compliants. It gets 38 lbs. of pressure hot, and about 20-something cold. I figure that's about average for the miles it has. As far as I know it still has the Dexcool. Plugs and wires are old, but it still runs just fine.

    How much longer can I expect this truck to go before needing a new motor? I figured if I could run it to about 240,000, I'd be happy...then sell it off. Is that an unreasonable expectation?

    The reason I'm curious because I find a lot of older vehicles with the 350s for sale that say something along the lines of "170K on the truck, 50K on the motor", or something like that. What's killing those motors so early?
    1997 Chevy Tahoe
    2002 GMC Sonoma
    2000 Pontiac Grand Prix GTP
    1999 Pontiac Firehawk
    1978 Pontiac Trans Am

  2. #2
    Jr. Engineer
    97chevz71's Avatar
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    May 2009
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    Perry County, Pennsylavania
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    235

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by BlackHawk99 View Post
    It seems to be pretty common knowledge that the 350 is a strong motor, but just how strong is it?

    We have 215,000 on our Tahoe and it runs really well. Burns some oil, has a bad rear main seal, provides ample power. No real compliants. It gets 38 lbs. of pressure hot, and about 20-something cold. I figure that's about average for the miles it has. As far as I know it still has the Dexcool. Plugs and wires are old, but it still runs just fine.

    How much longer can I expect this truck to go before needing a new motor? I figured if I could run it to about 240,000, I'd be happy...then sell it off. Is that an unreasonable expectation?

    The reason I'm curious because I find a lot of older vehicles with the 350s for sale that say something along the lines of "170K on the truck, 50K on the motor", or something like that. What's killing those motors so early?


    It basically depends how you take care of your motor. MY one relative had a 98 two-door tahoe and his the first problem he had with it was at 380,000 when his transmission went out. and after 150,000 miles on his motor he just added engine oil but it still runs to this day. MY friend has a 94 two-door tahoe he has 150,000 on it still runs. And one of my dads customers has a 350 with i think 400,000 on it and no problems. so i think if you get a good motor and keep care of it it will lasts for a long time.

  3. #3

    Default

    ive seen a few over the years that have gone 380k + if properly maintained ive got 180k on mine and it drives and runs like new

  4. #4

    Default

    My son has 320K on a 4.3L V6 (3/4s of a 5.7L). It does need a rebuild, but it still gets him to work everyday.


    2010 Z/71 Colorado C/C
    Black 4X4 w/5.3L V8
    ===============
    2007 Winnebago Adventurer
    w/8.1L Chevy & Allison 6spd.
    Canyon Lake, Texas

  5. #5

    Default

    172000 on the Tahoe. runs great, uses very little oil. Have a friend with a 96 Sub. Last I knew 330,000.
    When you hear hoofbeats, look for horses not zebras.

  6. #6

    Default

    my last truck was a short bed 1500 with the 5.7, 1990, i bought it with 350,000 sold it for 1000$ the kid lifted it 8 inches, put 40x18 interco boggers on it, ran it too over 400,000, odometer finally quit, truck is parked now but still runs, no smoke no knocks,and trust me i ran it HARD when i had it, current truck is a 94 2500 with 5.7 a tad over 200,000, hypertech chip tbi spacer cai shorty header to x pipe, its not fast but will roast the tires all day, starts everytime, no smoke, if you change ur oil on time the 350 will last longer than the truck

  7. #7
    Legend

    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    River Ridge Louisiana-4 miles W of New Orleans-didn't flood-water stopped 800 yards away.
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    Default

    My 1998 Suburban-2wd 1500- has 210,000 miles on it runs great-gets21 mpg hy and 14 mpg city(I drive like the old man I am, of course). I bought it 2 years ago with 195,000. I just put $500 in it-intake gaskets, changed timing chain(probably didn't need it).It doesn't use any oil-good power.

    The PO obviously took care of it.

    I've done other replacements-radiator, water pump, hoses, belt tensioner, brake booster etc.PO had trans rebuilt,AC redone, alternator.

    Everything breaks/wears out, but the actual motors-350/5.7 are obviously pretty sturdy, and will probably be the last to go.It doesn't use any oil, and the mpg means it has good compression(good power also)

    Charlie
    Last edited by phoebeisis; 06-07-2009 at 03:32 PM.
    1998 suburban-
    1/2 ton

    199500 miles
    River
    Ridge,LA

  8. #8
    Legend Mean_Green_95's Avatar
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    Apr 2009
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    Baton Rouge, Louisiana, United States
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    Default

    MY 95 Cheyenne with the 305 has 188000. It doesn't smoke, use oil, and has great power. I average 14-16 mpg in the city, but thats because I like to make music with the gas pedal. When I'm on the interstate and I do 70 with the cruise on and the windows up, I get 21-22 mpg. Its not fast, but loads of torque.
    2010 Equinox LT
    2.4, 6 speed auto, power lift gate, remote start, bluetooth, xm.

    1995 Cheyenne C1500 ext. cab(my baby, my first truck)
    5.0, 5 speed, Silverado appearance package, power nothing, bucket seats and console Silverado, painted black interior, eBay halo headlights, eBay chrome tails, eBay cai, dual Flowmaster 40's w/no cats, 15x7 American Racing Hopsters, Walmart fog lights, SS mirrors

  9. #9

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    my dad has been a prof. mud bogger for most of his life and swears by them, he had tried 454s and 327s but always said you cant beat a 350, i watched a guy at a mudhole get drunk one day and break a u joint, got pissed so he put the truck back on the trailer and stuck the throttle wide open and walked off, me along with about 500 other people stood around and watched in horror waiting for this thing to go pow, it ran out of gas, chewed on the rev limitr for about 5 mins and finally ran out of go juice, 350s are bad to the bone

  10. #10

    Default

    my old 97 has 250k miles on it and still running strong

    2003 Z71 Silverado LS
    Access roll up cover
    Bed Rails
    Billet Grill insert
    Bed Rug
    CB with PA system
    Waiting to be installed
    Two 8in RF HX2 punch( would have 12s but they got stolen)

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